Gilead coronavirus drug is $3,100. We can’t purchase India’s generic for 1/4 the price!

Daniel O’Day, Chairman & CEO, Gilead Sciences, recently sent an open letter to the American Public, indicating why its U.S. Patented drug Remdesivir to treat the coronavirus will be a company $$ bonanza with its new pricing.

Because of the way the U.S. system is set up and the discounts that government healthcare programs expect, the price for U.S. private insurance companies, will be $520 per vial, O’Day explained.

Dan O’Day

The drug requires six vials, so the total price is $3,120 per person. He said that  governments will get a “special” price break at $2,340.

To ensure broad and equitable access at a time of urgent global need, we have set a price for governments of developed countries of $390 per vial. Based on current treatment patterns, the vast majority of patients are expected to receive a 5-day treatment course using 6 vials of remdesivir, which equates to $2,340 per patient.

O’Day said we are lucky, because his company should have charged even more:

Taking the example of the United States, earlier hospital discharge would result in hospital savings of approximately $12,000 per patient. Even just considering these immediate savings to the healthcare system alone, we can see the potential value that remdesivir provides.

In the weird world of drug pricing, are patients here really getting a big break – a $12,000 value for “just” $3,100, according to Gilead? But there’s more to this story, and it isn’t pretty.

In the developing world, where healthcare resources, infrastructure and economics are so different, we have entered into agreements with generic manufacturers to deliver treatment at a substantially lower cost. These alternative solutions are designed to ensure that all countries in the world can provide access to treatment.

The deal is we pay $3,100 in the U.S., including Medicare patients, and other countries can sell generic versions for a fraction of that price.

If administered in the hospital – a logical development – billing could approach the average markup there of 497% the usual price, or about $15,000. That would be tragic news for those without drug insurance.

For Medicare – the only drug plan if older than 65 – the treatment will eat up most of the prescription drug savings for seniors that were included in Obamacare. Once seniors spend a total of insurance and co-pays of $4,020, they are in the the coverage gap, and are charged no less than 25% of drug costs, even if their prescriptions are many tens of thousands of dollars a month.

Meanwhile, in the world of unfair healthcare, Indian drug makers Cipla and Hetero Labs are launching their own generic versions of  COVID-19 treatment Remdesivir after an agreement with Gilead Sciences.

Cipla has priced its drug at less than Rs 5,000 ($66) per vial, and Hetero will charge Rs 5,400 ($71) per vial for its copy. That means the drugs are priced there about $400 per treatment course.

That low price applies to everyone, including the very rich, like Mukesh Abani – worth $64.5 billion U.S. – or any of the other 105 Indian billionaires, let alone the nation’s 750,000 millionaires.

You can bet that the generic coronavirus drugs from India will quickly travel here through the black market, but they won’t have to secretly import the generic into China, arguably the most advanced economy and technically-superior nation in the world.

China will be using the brand name, since China also patented Remdesivir, and will only pay a licensing fee to Gilead. Price for the drug in China will be an estimated $200 for the entire treatment course, compared to our $3,100.

This deal that should be examined by our government. Gilead agreed that China could patent the drug for exclusive sale in China, excluding Gilead from selling there, and vice-versa – China can’t sell in the rest of the world, giving Gilead that monopoly (17 years).

Meanwhile, Gilead promises to give additional “poor” countries, like India, the right to produce generics, and sell them for a fraction of what we pay here.

Most Americans recognize that they are being ripped off by the pricing of prescription drugs and often pay huge amounts for drugs here (Xarelto – $7 in India, $500+ in U.S.), but the drug company lobbyists control our lawmakers.

Sally Pipes

One of the most despicable spokespersons – in my opinion – for the legal drug cartel is Sally Pipes, CEO and President of Pacific Research Institute (PRI), who defends Gilead without a blink of regret:

Some Democratic lawmakers and policy experts attacked remdesivir’s price as soon as it was announced. They claim that Gilead could sell the drug for as little as $1 per dose – and that the higher price reflects nothing more than the pharmaceutical company’s desire to capitalize on the crisis.

That critique makes little sense. Even some of the drug industry’s most prominent critics have acknowledged that remdesivir’s price is fair, as the value it delivers could end up being a lot higher than its price tag. Further, selling innovative drugs for pennies would starve companies of the funding they need to develop the next generation of cures.

Despite the reality that other nations develop drugs, sell them inexpensively, somehow Pipes believes:

If the government set drug prices or seized patents to give away drugs for free – two policies that have recently gained ground among Democrats – drug development would grind to a halt. No investor would fund such risky research if the chances of recouping their outlays were null. Without adequate funding, it would take even longer to develop a successful new drug than it does today.

Conclusion: if you can’t make a few billion dollars profit, why make the effort, we’re a profit-industry, not national treasures or institutions. PRI is a brainchild of the Koch folks and other so-called “libertarian groups” who want to privatize everything in America and the world, and leave the government with no public functions, except protecting Wall Street, international corporations and the rich elites’ mansions and yachts.


The other side of the pricing controversy is more compelling.

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) has demanded that remdesivir be priced at no more than one U.S. dollar per dose, according to Businesswire.

AHF further demanded that Gilead Sciences also disclose all its public research and development costs and all public investments in connection with the development of remdesivir.

AHF’s dollar per dose demand is based on a University of Liverpool research study, “Minimum costs to manufacture new treatments for COVID-19” that allows for recovery of the cost of manufacturing plus a reasonable profit.

“The U.S. taxpayer paid for the research for this drug. Medicaid and Medicare are very likely going to pay for the prescriptions for this drug in the United States,” explained AHF President Michael Weinstein.

This massive expenditure of public resources requires full disclosure of how extensive the taxpayer is subsidizing drug companies.

We further demand that Gilead not enforce or claim any exclusive rights on patents for remdesivir, that it make available to the public all data, samples and information for the generic production of remdesivir, and that it improve transparency to show its manufacturing capacity and existing supply to allow for proper governance of the allocation of the drug according to medical needs, added Weinstein.

“Given Gilead’s abysmal record of making lifesaving treatments available for HIV and Hepatitis C, also financed at taxpayer expense, this pandemic profiteering enterprise can’t be trusted to look out for the public’s interest,” he explained.


And then there are cats, and this subject becomes more far-ranging:

When Robin Kintz’s two kittens, Fiona and Henry, contracted a fatal cat disease last year, she began hearing of a black-market drug from China. The use of the Gilead drug, known as GS-441524, is based on legitimate research from UC Davis, but the ways to get it seemed much less so, according to The Atlantic.

. “It was, ‘If you want to save your cat, send me thousands of dollars, and I’ll DHL you some unmarked vials,’” she says. And she did. Kintz transferred the thousands of dollars, got the unmarked vials from China, and then injected the clear liquid into her dying cats every day for months.

…The first remarkable thing, given the nature of the transaction, is that Kintz says the vials actually worked. Henry lived for almost another year, and Fiona made a full recovery. She’s still scampering around today, fluffy and alive—a miracle considering that vets had long thought her disease, feline infectious peritonitis, to be incurable and 100 percent fatal

The second remarkable thing is that GS-441524 is almost identical to a much buzzed-about human drug: remdesivir, the antiviral currently our best hope for treating COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

Black-market GS-441524 is expensive. A 12-week treatment for cats can cost upwards of $10,000, depending on the brand, and weight of the cat. Plus, there is no legal way to buy GS-441524 as medicine—not for cats, not for humans.

Henry (L) and Fiona (R) were both treated with GS-441524. Henry died earlier this year, but Fiona is still alive, which her owner Robin Kintz attributes to the drug. (photo by Robin Kintz and The Atlantic)

An alternative (much cheaper) to Remdesivir?

FWD doesn’t mean “Forward” to this group of richest elite

At first blush FWD.us sounded like a nice organization. Maybe I was prejudiced – my initials are FWD (middle name: William), and twitter handle is @fwdpost.

Was I wrong!

FWD.us is just another way to increase profits for the elite and eliminate jobs for the rest of us, especially our STEM grads.

This lobbying cabal was contrived in 2013 by big investors and leaders of the major tech firms, including Microsoft, Facebook and Google. The plan was to import more H-1B workers into the U.S., and replace native, highly paid professionals with often marginal-ability visa-holders, primarily from India and China. (See the list of founders and funders at the end of this blog)

Their efforts worked.

Last year, 60,300 Americans graduated with a computer science degree and 20,000 developers completed coding boot camps, a total of 80,300. Meanwhile 85,000 available H-1B visas were issued to foreigners to compete against those grads for the same tech jobs.

All of the visa holders were accepted to positions even before they arrived in this country.

About 25% of American tech grads had to settle for another, lower-paying field. In addition, thousands of U.S. tech workers were laid off in 2019 and replaced with foreigners.

FWD.us has convinced many politicians that more immigration, not higher pay, is necessary for hiring staff. The result – increasing numbers of H-1B visas for the tech industry..

To the dismay of workers President Donald “The Thumper” Trump, has embraced FWD.us during the past three years, spewing the “best and brightest” were needed from overseas, and ignoring the 330 million “pretty smart folks” who live here.

Trump’s allegiance to global corporations in general, versus his populist 2016 campaign stance, suggests he is spending too much time carousing in the swamp, making friends with the nation’s economic enemies.

The Trump doctrine before he took office: He was asked if he would end H-1B visas.

I will. First of all, I think and I know the H1B very well. And it’s something that I frankly use and I shouldn’t be allowed to use it. We shouldn’t have… Very, very bad for workers.

And second of all, I think it’s very important to say, well, I’m a businessman and I have to do what I have to do. When it’s sitting there waiting for you, but it’s very bad. It’s very bad for business in terms of…and it’s very bad for our workers and it’s unfair for our workers. And we should end it.

Trump’s promise was well said, then soon forgotten.

The stakes for workers and employers are very high.

Google alone employs more than 130,000 contractors and temp workers, plus 123,000 full-time employees.

Meanwhile, FWD.us has formed an alliance with hundreds of colleges and universities to promote fewer American and more international students – the so-called Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration.

FWD.us is also urging more foreign students in Optional Practical Training (OPT) for computer degree programs here, and wants the government to offer fast-track citizenship for their many DACA employees.

Investors are also trying to  expand OPT by passing GOP. Sen Mike Lee‘s S.386 bill, which lifts country caps on Indian graduates coming here.

There is a disturbing alliance between the right and left wings of politics to crush wages and hike profits. FWD.us immigration and prison “reform” views are shared by both the Koch Bros. network of think tanks and the George Soros organizations.

Just one example is left-wing Democrat Rep. Julian Castro, who has campaigned for more migration, while running in the 2020 Democratic primary. Calling himself a progressive, he was a founder of a billionaires’ lobbying group similar to FWD.us — the New American Economy. That group was created at the same time as FWD.us in 2013 by Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Microsoft co-founder Steve Ballmer, and Fox CEO Rupert Murdoch to promote the “Gang of Eight” amnesty.

In an omen of things to come. FWD.us wants to allow many migrants to get occupational licenses for blue-collar jobs. These permits would allow FWD.us investors to hire cheap migrants in place of American electricians, plumbers, natural-gas technicians, and many other jobs.

Founders of FWD.US

Funders of FWD.US

What’s good advice to help you get into your first choice college? Just pretend you are a citizen of China and pay full price!

Some 400 college and university presidents belong to the Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration – see here – which advocates for ever more international students.

Follow the money, and you discover the huge advantage of recruiting foreign students, who are never allowed to receive school or federal aid, and so they always pay full tuition.

Take the University of California (UC) for example:

Foreign nationals pay UC about $70,000 a year. The same school charges $27,000 to an average American student (family earns $100,000, owns their home and has $100,000 assets). That’s a total subsidy of $43,000 from the school and federal programs.

The international student’s tuition and room and board is 2.5 times an American’s, so colleges and universities vie for foreigners to increase institutional revenue.

Money, not merit, may often be making admission decisions.

All together, post-secondary institutions receive $45 billion in extra tuition fees each year by refusing American students and giving openings to international applicants.

This is not a small problem.

In 2019, the total number of international students enrolled in US colleges was 1,095,299, including:

  • 431,930 undergraduate students
  • 377,943 graduate students
  • 62,341 non-degree students
  • 223,085 Optional Practical Training (OPT) workers

The most recent statistics available show foreign students – who made up 12% of the total student population – contributed nearly 30% of all tuition revenue at public universities.

The top five US schools displacing American students with foreign students in 2019 were:

  1. New York University -19,605 foreign
  2. University of Southern California Los Angeles -16,340 foreign
  3. Northeastern University – 16,075 foreign
  4. Columbia University – 15,897 foreign
  5. University of Illinois/Urbana – 13,497 foreign

If you are concerned with what happens to these millions of international students after graduation, don’t worry – most of them have it made. The information industry is where many are headed, and big tech companies employ hundreds of thousands of foreign workers, who replace Americans under various government programs.

All told, Information Technology (IT) employment in the United States reached an estimated 12.1 million workers last year, growing by more than 307,000 in just 12 months.

A California lawyer, Randy Berholtz, told the San Diego Union-Tribune his experience with preferences for foreign, versus American students:

First, we are taking needed positions away from Californian and American students. My daughter’s guidance counselor at a San Diego high school told her students not to apply to UC San Diego, because she felt that even though they had top grades, they wouldn’t be accepted there, owing to its difficult admission policies.

The situation is compounded by the huge number (370,000) of international students from Communist China, Berholtz explained

Second, we are educating students from a fairly hostile communist country with which we are embroiled in a trade war, and we may eventually be involved in a major military conflict at some point.

In addition, there are many cases of China’s students, researchers and the like, who have been linked to an organized effort by that country to spy on us, and steal important inventions and other trade-secret information from American entities.

He also said that residents of other USA states are not being actively recruited, while schools seek applicants from China and elsewhere.

Third, it appears that UC admissions officers have decreased their efforts to attract other American students from outside of California in favor of students from China.

I am originally from the coal regions of Pennsylvania, where poverty rates are in the 50% to 60% range. Students from my hometown and region would love to attend UC San Diego, as well as students right here in outlying cities and communities in San Diego and the rest of California.

On a personal note, he added:

One of my daughters had very high grades from a well-known high school in San Diego, and did not get into UC San Diego. She instead was admitted to the Claremont Colleges.

My Shanghai colleague’s daughter, however, was admitted as an undergraduate into UC San Diego, which just isn’t right.

With the current Covid-19 scare, we are losing millions of jobs, many forever. It is time to prioritize Americans for remaining job openings. Those in the higher education business must help America’s “best and brightest”, and let other countries invest the time and money to take care of their own.

President Donald Trump’s recent proclamation to limit workers and students from China does not apply to undergraduate students and also allows in all graduate students, except those tied to the Chinese military or government. The move was nothing but a token effort – political optics at a time when we need insightful vision.

Next Tuesday: How the “Alliance” joined with FWD.US to put Americans last!

China Set to Patent Gilead’s Experimental Coronavirus Drug

Follow the money! The esteemed investor site The Motley Fool explained this week:
The drug (Remdesivir) could see over $1 billion in sales in the course of the entire coronavirus outbreak, due to the sheer number of patients infected and potentially at risk for the virus. This is assuming the drug can treat up to 500,000 patients and cost little over $2,000 for one course of treatment. 

But who will control the licensing and supply of the drug, now being promoted by the media as the preferred treatment for Covid-19, versus Hydroxychloroquine, a $20 generic?

Remember the lab where the virus probably originated?

“The Wuhan Institute of Virology — based in the Chinese city at the center of the epidemic — has applied for a patent in China for the use of the antiviral drug, known as Remdesivir, in treating Covid-19. The application was made on Jan. 21 together with a military academy,” according to a Feb. 4 statement on the institute’s website.

If the application succeeds, Gilead would supply the U.S. and other countries, but not China – the largest customer in the world.

“The good thing in having a patent is that it would lead to cross-licensing situations that give China more bargaining chips in negotiating the licensing fee with Gilead,” Wang Yanyu, a senior partner at AllBright Law Offices in Beijing, explained.

While the politicians in the U.S. were busy closing the Senate and dominating the airwaves with a foregone no at the President’s impeachment trial, China was busy buying up supplies to treat the virus and making this bet on Remdesivir.

“While Gilead’s experimental drug isn’t licensed or approved anywhere in the world, it is being rushed into trials in China on coronavirus patients after showing early signs of being highly effective. It may go into clinical trials in China as early as next week in patients with moderate and severe symptoms of the pathogen,” Merdad Parsey, Gilead’s chief medical officer, said.

In the journal Cell Research Wuhan Institute scientists said Gilead’s Remdesivir, and Hydroxychloroquine, are “highly effective” in laboratory studies at thwarting the coronavirus.

China is capable of manufacturing Hydroxychloroquine, and now wants not only access to Remdesivir, but also worldwide control of the drug.

Gilead will still retain the global rights to market the antiviral medication, once approved, in treating illnesses such as Ebola and SARS, the Wuhan institute said.

If China grants the patent, it will control the use and price of Remdesivir, enabling huge profits from treating a worldwide virus. Gilead’s share from working with China remains unclear at this time, but dividing up a global Remdesivir treatment conservative total of even 100 million patients would yield a $200 billion payoff.

Will Congress, the media or the medical profession censure the company for such a deal?

Unlikely, since Big Pharma spends tens of billions of dollars on ads and other marketing, including direct payments to universities and doctors.

Totals listed below account for payments during the 2018 calendar year that mention Gilead products.

GILEAD SCIENCES INC Payments in 2018 (from Propublica)

26,534 doctors and 131 teaching hospitals

Totals listed below account for payments during the 2018 calendar year that mention this product. If a payment record mentions more than one product, the entire value will be included in each of those products.

Gilead products, number of doctors, and total paid

EPCLUSA               7,487    $4.32M

BIKTARVY             3,937     $2.08M

TRUVADA             3,496     $1.65M

VEMLIDY              3,268     $1.58M

ZYDELIG               1,283     $962K

RANEXA                2,290    $870K

CAYSTON              559       $292K

YESCARTA            233        $218K

LETAIRIS               1,566     $181K

  HARVONI              176        $29,211

Top Doctors Receiving Payments From Gilead in 2018

RICHARD WHITLEY
Pediatric Infectious Diseases
BIRMINGHAM, AL
$302K

ZOBAIR YOUNOSSI
Surgery
FALLS CHURCH, VA
$234K

SORANA SEGAL- MAURER
Infectious Disease
FLUSHING, NY
$142K

CHRISTIAN RAMERS
Infectious Disease
SAN DIEGO, CA
$138K

CALVIN PAN
Gastroenterology
FLUSHING, NY
$135K

ANTHONY MARTINEZ
Internal Medicine
BUFFALO, NY
$130K

BRIAN PEARLMAN
Internal Medicine
ATLANTA, GA
$128K

FELICIA STERMAN
Internal Medicine
SAN FRANCISCO, CA
$122K

SAMMY SAAB
Transplant Surgery
LOS ANGELES, CA
$121K

DOUGLAS CUNNINGHAM
Geriatric Medicine
SCOTTSDALE, AZ
$114K

CYNTHIA BRINSON
Family Medicine
AUSTIN, TX
$102K

Top Teaching Hospitals Receiving Payments From Gilead in 2018

EMORY UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL
ATLANTA, GA
$2.76M

UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA HOSPITAL
BIRMINGHAM, AL
$1.76M

MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL HOSPITAL
BOSTON, MA
$1.45M

LANGLEY PORTER PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL
SAN FRANCISCO, CA
$1.26M

HAZARD ARH
HAZARD, KY
$793K

KECK HOSPITAL OF USC
LOS ANGELES, CA
$609K

JACKSON MEMORIAL
MIAMI, FL
$595K

HENRY FORD HOSPITAL
DETROIT, MI
$511K

TAMPA GENERAL HOSPITAL
TAMPA, FL
$478K

DANA-FARBER CANCER INSTITUTE
BOSTON, MA
$450K

NEW YORK-PRESBYTERIAN/QUEENS
FLUSHING, NY
$372K

Report on payments to doctors from all healthcare companies!

A video translated from Chinese:

What is your chance of a fatal Covid-19 infection?

We compiled these charts yesterday to demonstrate total deaths per 1,000, 10,000 and 1,000,000 persons by state and country. Some 193 nations are safer and have a lower mortality than the United States. The higher the number, the more chance of death. Only one nation – San Marino – has more than a one-in-a-thousand chance of dying from the disease.

WORLD COVID-19 UNITED STATES COVID-19
Deaths/  Deaths/ Deaths/ Deaths/ Deaths/ Deaths/
Country Million 10,000 1,000 State Million 10,000 1,000
San Marino 1,149 11.490 1.14900 New York 933 9.330 0.93300
Belgium 490 4.900 0.49000 New Jersey 473 4.730 0.47300
Andorra 466 4.660 0.46600 Connecticut 315 3.150 0.31500
Spain 437 4.370 0.43700 Louisiana 278 2.780 0.27800
Italy 391 3.910 0.39100 Massachusetts 250 2.500 0.25000
France 302 3.020 0.30200 Michigan 240 2.400 0.24000
UK 237 2.370 0.23700 Rhode Island 142 1.420 0.14200
Sint Maarten 233 2.330 0.23300 Washington DC 140 1.400 0.14000
Netherlands 215 2.150 0.21500 Illinois 101 1.010 0.10100
Switzerland 161 1.610 0.16100 Pennsylvania 97 0.970 0.09700
Sweden 152 1.520 0.15200 Washington 87 0.870 0.08700
Ireland 124 1.240 0.12400 Indiana 85 0.850 0.08500
USA 123 1.230 0.12300 Maryland 81 0.810 0.08100
Channel Islands 121 1.210 0.12100 Colorado 76 0.760 0.07600
Luxembourg 117 1.170 0.11700 Delaware 71 0.710 0.07100
Bermuda 80 0.800 0.08000 Georgia 66 0.660 0.06600
Monaco 76 0.760 0.07600 Vermont 61 0.610 0.06100
Isle of Man 71 0.710 0.07100 Mississippi 53 0.530 0.05300
Portugal 70 0.700 0.07000 Nevada 53 0.530 0.05300
Iran 61 0.610 0.06100 Ohio 40 0.400 0.04000
Denmark 61 0.610 0.06100 Florida 38 0.380 0.03800
Germany 55 0.550 0.05500 Wisconsin 38 0.380 0.03800
Saint Martin 52 0.520 0.05200 Oklahoma 36 0.360 0.03600
Austria 50 0.500 0.05000 Virginia 33 0.330 0.03300
Canada 42 0.420 0.04200 Missouri 33 0.330 0.03300
Slovenia 36 0.360 0.03600 Alabama 33 0.330 0.03300
British VI 33 0.330 0.03300 Kentucky 33 0.330 0.03300
Martinique 32 0.320 0.03200 Kansas 32 0.320 0.03200
Antigua/Barbuda 31 0.310 0.03100 New Hampshire 31 0.310 0.03100
Norway 30 0.300 0.03000 California 30 0.300 0.03000
Estonia 30 0.300 0.03000 Idaho 27 0.270 0.02700
Panama 28 0.280 0.02800 Arizona 26 0.260 0.02600
Ecuador 27 0.270 0.02700 New Mexico 26 0.260 0.02600
Iceland 26 0.260 0.02600 Maine 26 0.260 0.02600
Liechtenstein 26 0.260 0.02600 South Carolina 24 0.240 0.02400
Turks & Caicos 26 0.260 0.02600 Iowa 24 0.240 0.02400
Turkey 24 0.240 0.02400 Minnesota 24 0.240 0.02400
North Macedonia 24 0.240 0.02400 Tennessee 22 0.220 0.02200
Romania 23 0.230 0.02300 North Carolina 19 0.190 0.01900
Bahamas 23 0.230 0.02300 Texas 18 0.180 0.01800
Dominican Rep. 21 0.210 0.02100 Oregon 18 0.180 0.01800
Israel 20 0.200 0.02000 Nebraska 15 0.150 0.01500
Hungary 20 0.200 0.02000 Arkansas 13 0.130 0.01300
Guadeloupe 20 0.200 0.02000 North Dakota 13 0.130 0.01300
Aruba 19 0.190 0.01900 Alaska 12 0.120 0.01200
Czechia 17 0.170 0.01700 West Virginia 11 0.110 0.01100
Finland 17 0.170 0.01700 Montana 10 0.100 0.01000
Moldova 17 0.170 0.01700 Utah 9 0.090 0.00900
Barbados 17 0.170 0.01700 South Dakota 8 0.080 0.00800
Bosnia 15 0.150 0.01500 Hawaii 7 0.070 0.00700
Mayotte 15 0.150 0.01500 Wyoming 3 0.030 0.00300
Cayman Islands 15 0.150 0.01500
Serbia 14 0.140 0.01400
Lithuania 13 0.130 0.01300
Brazil 12 0.120 0.01200
Peru 12 0.120 0.01200
Greece 11 0.110 0.01100
Croatia 11 0.110 0.01100
Poland 10 0.100 0.01000
Cyprus 10 0.100 0.01000
Algeria 9 0.090 0.00900
Albania 9 0.090 0.00900
Guyana 9 0.090 0.00900
Montenegro 8 0.080 0.00800
Chile 7 0.070 0.00700
Armenia 7 0.070 0.00700
Malta 7 0.070 0.00700
Mauritius 7 0.070 0.00700
Bulgaria 6 0.060 0.00600
Trinidad/Tobago 6 0.060 0.00600
Curaçao 6 0.060 0.00600
S. Korea 5 0.050 0.00500
Mexico 5 0.050 0.00500
Belarus 5 0.050 0.00500
Honduras 5 0.050 0.00500
Belize 5 0.050 0.00500
UAE 4 0.040 0.00400
Philippines 4 0.040 0.00400
Colombia 4 0.040 0.00400
Morocco 4 0.040 0.00400
Bahrain 4 0.040 0.00400
China 3 0.030 0.00300
Saudi Arabia 3 0.030 0.00300
Australia 3 0.030 0.00300
Ukraine 3 0.030 0.00300
Qatar 3 0.030 0.00300
Malaysia 3 0.030 0.00300
Argentina 3 0.030 0.00300
Cuba 3 0.030 0.00300
Tunisia 3 0.030 0.00300
Latvia 3 0.030 0.00300
Lebanon 3 0.030 0.00300
Bolivia 3 0.030 0.00300
Uruguay 3 0.030 0.00300
Russia 2 0.020 0.00200
Japan 2 0.020 0.00200
Singapore 2 0.020 0.00200
Indonesia 2 0.020 0.00200
Egypt 2 0.020 0.00200
Kuwait 2 0.020 0.00200
Iraq 2 0.020 0.00200
New Zealand 2 0.020 0.00200
Azerbaijan 2 0.020 0.00200
Slovakia 2 0.020 0.00200
Cameroon 2 0.020 0.00200
Djibouti 2 0.020 0.00200
Burkina Faso 2 0.020 0.00200
Jamaica 2 0.020 0.00200
Brunei 2 0.020 0.00200
Liberia 2 0.020 0.00200
Cabo Verde 2 0.020 0.00200
Suriname 2 0.020 0.00200
Oman 1 0.010 0.00100
Costa Rica 1 0.010 0.00100
Georgia 1 0.010 0.00100
Paraguay 1 0.010 0.00100
El Salvador 1 0.010 0.00100
Congo 1 0.010 0.00100
South Africa 0.9 0.009 0.00090
Kazakhstan 0.9 0.009 0.00090
Eswatini 0.9 0.009 0.00090
Pakistan 0.8 0.008 0.00080
Afghanistan 0.8 0.008 0.00080
Niger 0.8 0.008 0.00080
Kyrgyzstan 0.8 0.008 0.00080
Thailand 0.7 0.007 0.00070
Jordan 0.7 0.007 0.00070
Mali 0.7 0.007 0.00070
Bangladesh 0.6 0.006 0.00060
Palestine 0.6 0.006 0.00060
Togo 0.6 0.006 0.00060
Hong Kong 0.5 0.005 0.00050
India 0.4 0.004 0.00040
Guinea 0.4 0.004 0.00040
Guatemala 0.4 0.004 0.00040
Somalia 0.4 0.004 0.00040
Gabon 0.4 0.004 0.00040
Botswana 0.4 0.004 0.00040
Gambia 0.4 0.004 0.00040
Ghana 0.3 0.003 0.00030
Ivory Coast 0.3 0.003 0.00030
Taiwan 0.3 0.003 0.00030
DRC 0.3 0.003 0.00030
Sri Lanka 0.3 0.003 0.00030
Kenya 0.3 0.003 0.00030
Venezuela 0.3 0.003 0.00030
Haiti 0.3 0.003 0.00030
Nicaragua 0.3 0.003 0.00030
Senegal 0.2 0.002 0.00020
Sudan 0.2 0.002 0.00020
Zambia 0.2 0.002 0.00020
Syria 0.2 0.002 0.00020
Zimbabwe 0.2 0.002 0.00020
Mauritania 0.2 0.002 0.00020
Uzbekistan 0.1 0.001 0.00010
Nigeria 0.1 0.001 0.00010
Tanzania 0.1 0.001 0.00010
Libya 0.1 0.001 0.00010
Malawi 0.1 0.001 0.00010
Myanmar 0.09 0.001 0.00009
Benin 0.08 0.001 0.00008
Burundi 0.08 0.001 0.00008
Angola 0.06 0.001 0.00006
Ethiopia 0.03 >0.001 0.00003
Réunion >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Vietnam >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Rwanda >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Gibraltar >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Cambodia >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Madagascar >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
French Guiana >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Equatorial Guinea >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
French Polynesia >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Uganda >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Maldives >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Guinea-Bissau >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Macao >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Eritrea >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Mozambique >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Sierra Leone >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Chad >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Mongolia >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Nepal >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Laos >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Timor-Leste >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
New Caledonia >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Fiji >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Dominica >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Namibia >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Saint Lucia >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Grenada >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Saint Kitts/Nevis >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
St. Vincent >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Falkland Islands >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Greenland >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Montserrat >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Seychelles >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Vatican City >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Papua New Guinea >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
St. Barth >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Western Sahara >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Bhutan >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Carib. Netherlands >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Sao Tome >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
South Sudan >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Anguilla >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Saint Pierre >.03 >0.001 >0.00003
Yemen >.03 >0.001 >0.00003

Brem-V in WW2 was defeated without approval by the FDA

The World War reached a turning point in 1943 as the last of German troops at Stalingrad surrendered on January 31, but that celebration was soon forgotten, as some American officials learned of a new threat to our nation from the barbarians.

Tobacco Mosaic Virus

In a laboratory just outside Bremen, Germany, scientists had been studying new biological weapons, when they made a breakthrough in late 1942 by creating a deadly variant of the tobacco mosaic virus. It was named Brem-V.

After reviewing documents and making notes from an anonymous source, the story recalled here reveals a sinister plot that was thwarted by American resolve.

The virus was prepared in a liquid mixture, poured into small cologne perfume atomizers and sent through Switzerland into the United States, where the plan was to spray into the atmosphere at crowded events, and so the epidemic would begin.

Lab tests showed Brem-V was deadly, killing as many as 3% of those infected, and its symptoms were debilitating enough to keep victims in bed for at least two weeks if they survived. Should only 10 million got the infection, the 300,000 ensuing deaths would cause panic, shutdowns, even end much production of vital war materials.

On February 14th spies set the operation into motion in New York City’s Chinatown, as the virus was was released at three restaurants on two adjacent streets.

Within hours the White House learned of the attack and ordered a quiet tracking of those possibly affected. The virus was not extremely contagious, but it had a long period of gestation. The first step was a quarantine, extending 12 blocks in any direction. This area included about 8,000 residents.

Customs officials had intercepted one of the two shipments of the virus a week earlier. The government was already working on plans to fight a mass Brem-V epidemic if there were other virus bottles that had escaped detection.

Testing was vital. If those infected could be removed from the zone and treated off site, then life would return to normal in the neighborhood.

U.S. drug manufacturers had met with federal officials for several days, and none had tests that worked.

Flag of the KLA

Prior to the Nazi attack on the U.S., the Germans had tested the virus on occupied Korea. Patriots, working in secret, had devised a simple test kit to identify the virus with only a four-hour turnaround. By isolating the affected, many lives were saved and the Germans were unaware of the breakthrough.

The chemical details and schematics for the test were subsequently spirited off to the Korean Liberation Army (KLA), which was fighting in China against the Japanese invasion.

An American military officer at one of the early Brem-V task force sessions told the group that he heard the KLA had created a virus test that was both safe and fast. He was ordered to get more details and samples.

In two days the test kits arrived by plane from China. The FDA examined them, and reported:

While the KLA Test shows great promise, particularly because of anecdotal reports that these were used on several hundred patients in Korea without ill effects, such a test must require further examination by our agency. We would prefer a four-month, small group examination of efficacy and subsequent adverse reactions, followed by a seven-month regimen with a larger group, including subjects with and without the virus. Using information gained from these studies  we can make a recommendation after no more than a two-month review of the results.

This response from the Food and Drug folks was sent up the chain of command, ultimately to the White House, and a reply came back almost immediately to the task force:

We have much to fear from little men with great responsibility, and no war is won with cowardly sloth. Forget the bureaucrats, order 10,000 of the tests so we have some extras in case those SOB’s try this again.

-FDR, Feb. 16, 1943

Thanks to swift action, Brem-V was quickly eradicated by testing, isolating and treating for symptoms. Sadly, a handful of Americans died from the virus, but none from the testing.

No American drug company or medical device manufacturer was permitted to exploit the public with over-priced tests. The KLA donated the rights to formulas and methods – all for the sake of humanity.

Read how modern Korea’s Coronavirus $20 test was ignored here

Korean Liberation Army in WW2

China and India – not Mexico – are now sending us the most “legal” immigrants to take our very best jobs and lower all wages

No country has sent more of its nationals to the United States over the last decade than China, according to the Census Bureau.

In 2006, 350,000 Mexican nationals legally arrived in the U.S., which was more than Chinese, Indians, and Canadians combined. A dozen years later, it was China that supplied the most foreign-born immigrants to the U.S. — surpassing India, Mexico, and Canada in 2018.

Since 2010, China has dominated foreign-born legal immigration, as both corporations and universities competed to offer visas and other incentives that displaced American workers and scholars, reducing wages and opportunities for U.S. citizens.

The population of Chinese immigrants in the United States has zoomed nearly 700% since 1980, reaching 2.5 million in 2018. Some 1.2 million legal immigrants from all nations are imported into our country every year.

Click here to view an interactive map that shows where immigrants (not born in the U.S.) from China and other countries have settled in the U.S.

Issuing employment visas to China and India harshly impacts our technical and professional fields. These work permits go to U.S. firms that claim no Americans exist to do high-paying jobs. It is a ridiculous claim, considering, for example, the current median H-1B salary is $90,000 for software engineers.

While corporate America is maintaining there are no qualified citizen applicants for these jobs, millions of STEM grads work outside their specialties.

Another population factor is that China leads the world in sending international students to the United States. In just the 2018-19 school year, close to 377,000 students from mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau were enrolled in U.S. higher education institutions, according to the Institute of International Education. They accounted for about one-third of the 1 million international students studying in the United States.

One benefit to China is that it receives a booming growth of remittances from their citizens working here – now more than $70 billion a year. Another benefit is that China dominates our STEM advanced degree programs, and their leaders have easy access to U.S. corporate and military technology.

Tom Psillas

Tom Psillas is one of the Americans hit by the increase in hiring foreigners, especially from China and India:

The H-1B Visa program is definitely a big issue for most of us software developers born and raised in the US. Over 65% of us have been replaced with H-1B Visa workers, only because companies are getting away with it and the laws are not being enforced enough.

Psillas said that 20 years ago Silicon Valley had some Chinese and Indian workers, who were “educated and well-trained.”

Now that the H-1B Visa program has grown too big, we have issues with the large Indian firms dumping H-1B Visa workers in almost all large corporations in America; many times replacing older American workers.

The American worker, me included, was forced to train these H-1B workers, who were our replacements. Do you think we could train them to do everything we learned over many years? Absolutely not.

The end result is sub-standard work, incompetence (not due to lack of effort), and lack of direction from management, who fear for their own job.

Most H-1B workers work hard, Psillas explained, “but after a while, when they see the attitude of management in corporate America and they start caring less about the job.”

Who wouldn’t, given the conditions they are forced to work under. The Indian recruiting firms exploit them, making things even worse.

It is not their fault. It is the fault of corporate CEOs, who care about making their big bonus by cutting expenses and propping up stocks for their investors. They don’t care about the American worker, who lost their job, any more than they care about the H-1B Visa workers being exploited.

…most American software developers in their 60s are out of work, at a time when we should be making the most and spending the most, helping our economy. Instead, we are not eating out anymore, not buying anything, losing our homes or not remodeling them, and not spending money on imports from China.

The following H-1B major occupations and total employed by foreign workers:

The U.S. H-1B is issued for three years, but can be renewed for another three years if approved by the government and employer.

After graduation with a Masters or Doctor’s degrees, Chinese international students generally return home to use their skills there.

Corporate private cities – no rights, no votes and no protests!

Who needs a government?

What’s so great about the right to vote for your local, state or national leaders?

Why not allow a corporation decide how much to spend on your schools, police, roads and hospitals?

If these questions sound outlandish, you haven’t heard of the newest trend – private cities – where a chief operating officer and a corporate gang replace democracy and representative government with trickle down domination.

Sarah Moser, associate professor of geography at McGill University, warns us:

A private city is kind of like a giant mall.

If management doesn’t like you or the way you dress, they can theoretically expel you and you don’t have recourse to challenge this, as it is private property.

They don’t have mayors. They don’t have elected city councils. They have CEOs. So it’s a completely corporate model. There are no elected officials to appeal to and if you are seen as a troublemaker, you could potentially be kicked out.

Private cities are big business, no longer some tiny experiment.

More than 15 new private cities and dozens more new urban areas are being developed on public-private partnerships throughout the world today.

Forest City, a huge $100 billion new city, is being built in Malaysia on reclaimed land, just up the coast from Danga Bay by China’s Country Garden.

“It’s China’s largest property developer creating a private gated city from scratch in the ocean. They’ve had to engage in one of the largest land reclamation projects in the world to create a new city for 700,000 residents,” Moser said.

I think what’s particularly intriguing about this new city is that it’s geared toward Chinese nationals, not toward Malaysians …. There are no Malaysian police or military allowed into the project. So who’s policing the place? It’s private security guards.

In Springfield, Australia, a private city was built from scratch on 7,000 acres of bush land by that country’s 39th richest man. It now has 40,000 residents.

Morocco is building 20 new cities. Tanzania is constructing nine.

Saudi Arabia’s $500 billion mega-city – Neom – that will be 33 times the acreage of New York City

NEOM, a new city for one million residents in Saudi Arabia, includes plans for robot maids, cloud-seeding technology, and an artificial moon. In 2017, they hired three of the world’s largest consultancy firms — McKinsey & Co, Boston Consulting, and Oliver Wyman — to advise them.

Moser said another example is King Abdullah Economic City, a mega-project in Saudi Arabia:

It’s completely private, and it’s run by a company that’s actually listed on the Saudi Stock Exchange. So technically, I could buy stock in King Abdullah Economic City and have some say over the city that residents would not have …

In the 1960s, these (cities) were state projects for the greater good.

In contrast, I would say the majority of the cities today are fueled by corporations, and these corporations see unprecedented opportunities to make money …. IBM, Cisco, Google, Microsoft, they’re all in the new city game now.

“There are many ambiguities in private cities about the rights of residents, the legal protections they have, and the legal recourse they have if something goes wrong,” Moser explained.

CEOs are fired not for failing the residents, but for failing the shareholders. When a city is private, the priority of management is profit, not the needs of citizens.

Moser said the United Nations predicts 68% of the world’s population will live in cities by 2050:

They’re claiming that … the housing shortages can be addressed through the construction of new cities, and this is preferable to the endless squatter settlements and slums that we’re seeing popping up everywhere.

But in reality, a lot of these new cities are being targeted at the elites — people who globally own five to 10 properties already.

For example, in Kenya the middle class earns about $20 U.S. a day, and units in these new cities that are being created in Kenya often cost $150,000 U.S. It would take five lifetimes to actually pay off that condo.

Songdo – a private “smart” city

Songdo is a 130,000-person new city, owned and operated by Gale International and POSCO in South Korea. This smart city was developed in part by technology giant Cisco and includes a “living lab” for Cisco technologies.

“Everything in Songdo is wired. There are sensors on everything, and CCTV cameras everywhere. This is a way of increasing efficiency in the city, reducing crime … There are a lot of critics saying that this is too high a cost to pay, and we should be concerned about privacy,” Moser said.

She explained that new smart cities around the globe are “kind of like the Sidewalk Labs project on steroids.” Sidewalk Labs is a subsidiary of Google’s owner, Alphabet Inc. It plans to create a smart city, Quayside, on Toronto’s waterfront.

“People are suspicious, rightfully so, of a technology company’s role and what they’re standing to gain and what we stand to lose. And also wondering, well, is Toronto so broken that we can’t use existing mechanisms for urban development?” Moser said.

Financial reporter Wade Shepard explained that “in some ways, private cities are viewed as a ‘win-win’ type of shortcut … governments can get their new developments built for them via private capital, rather than tax dollars, and still take a cut of the earnings, while private firms can profit at each stage of the urbanization process,”

Shepherd said the private city movement allows drastic social changes:

Private cities, kind of like special economic zones, often have their own sets of rules which often run perpendicular to the laws of the nations they are geographically located within.

They are … a swath of land purchased by a private company, that can be run as that company sees fit.

They are wild cards where the conventions of the broader country don’t apply, where new labor regulations, tax codes, financial laws, business and property registration systems, and education models can be implemented and tested.

Country Garden’s Danga Bay, Malaysia

America gives away our jobs and factories to China with a lopsided de minimis rule promoted by global businesses

Zach Mottl

Zach Mottl, chief alignment officer of Atlas Tool Works and a past chairman of the Technology and Manufacturing Association of Illinois, is a very unhappy American.

Four of his state’s members of the House of Representatives are trying to block the White House effort to lower the “express shipment” measure included in the de minimis rule. This regulation currently allows China to send us goods without any tariffs or customs duties, as long as the value is less than $800.

These anti-American politicians – tools of global businesses – oppose lowering this limit to $200: Cheri Bustos (D), Bradley Schneider (D), Danny Davis (D), Mike Quigley (D) and Never-Trumper Darin LaHood (R).

Mottl said the current deal with China is blatantly unfair:

China’s de minimis level is a mere $8. That means any American company shipping a product to China – valued at more than $8 – must pay a duty. But there’s no reciprocity; a Chinese good priced as high as $799 can enter the U.S. duty-free.

In 2016, Congress increased the de minimis limit from $200 to $800.

That opened the floodgates, allowing companies like Amazon to further incentivize imports, Mottl explained.

My manufacturing company, Atlas Tool Works, has been in operation in Illinois since 1918. We are a textbook example of the kind of domestic American company that has been surviving for years in the face of heavily subsidized imports. And our nearly 80 employees depend on Atlas for their jobs and livelihoods.

Mottl said the current system is being exploited and the $800 limit is being abused to allow a flood of goods entering the United States, often with much higher ticket prices than listed on import documents:

For example, 60 counterfeit Chicago Cubs jerseys were recently seized at O’Hare Airport. The jerseys were listed at a value of only $177. But a Customs official estimated the merchandise would have actually sold for $7,200.

Duties are only charged based on the value of the import. Popular items, such as designer sunglasses may sell here for $500 or more, but their actual price to import from China usually ranges between $7 and $15. That means 100 sunglasses would avoid any import duties ($700 declared), but would retail here for $500 X 100, or $50,000 total.

Also, Congress could better serve America’s manufacturers by passing the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), Mottl said.

The pending deal contains helpful enforcement mechanisms and also directs Canada and Mexico to raise their current de minimis levels.

Matching America’s de minimis levels to those of our trading partners could help to ensure a more level playing field.

Meanwhile, Bustos, LaHood, Schneider, Davis, and Quigley have written to U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, explaining that they “strongly oppose any effort … to lower the $800 de minimis threshold” in the U.S.

Their stance is purely pro-business, benefiting huge corporations like Amazon and Walmart, who can use multiple small purchases to avoid the duties our goods face in China. This is not the historic stance of the Democrat Party, which has long supported workers and consumers over retailers and wholesalers.

As Mottl explained:

These representatives are essentially arguing for a lopsided policy that enables Amazon — one of the world’s most profitable companies — to keep importing subsidized, low-cost goods from China at absolutely no cost.

This is doubly egregious considering that Amazon paid zero federal and state taxes in 2018 on more than $11 billion in profits.

Bike supplier and retailer offers similar warning on de minimis rule

de minimis rates in various countries